Who to ask for a LOR?

(Applications Advice, Letters of Recommendation . . . )
ebihara
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Joined: Mon Apr 30, 2012 3:05 am

Who to ask for a LOR?

Postby ebihara » Mon Apr 30, 2012 3:13 am

I am a Poli Sci major at HYPMS with a 3.87 GPA and 175 LSAT. I am thinking of applying to T6 come this fall and recently started thinking about who to ask for LORs. I have one professor who would definitely write me a decent rec, (got As in both classes I took with her, have talked to her outside class multiple times) but I can't decide which one would be a better option for the second LOR.

1. A poli sci professor with whom I took a grad level course and received an A-. I have talked to him outside class once, but he doesn't know too much about me in general. He will be my adviser next year for my senior honors thesis, but I doubt if I will have worked very much with him by the time I ask him for a rec (which will be around late september, at the latest).

2. A poli sci professor outside my school, for whom I worked over the last summer. He knows me a lot better than the first guy and he was very satisfied with my research work.

My school's pre-law adviser said I should ask the first guy since law schools want recs from professors at your school... But I feel like the second guy will write me a much better rec... what should I do?

Mal Reynolds
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Re: Who to ask for a LOR?

Postby Mal Reynolds » Mon Apr 30, 2012 3:47 am

In this one case, your advisor is right. Do not take that to mean that your advisor will ever be right again-he or she must have gotten lucky. You can get both of them to write an LOR for you though. If you can only use two, use the two professors with whom you have taken classes. But I think it would be fine to use that third one as a supplemental letter.

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realhero
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Re: Who to ask for a LOR?

Postby realhero » Mon Apr 30, 2012 6:35 pm

The standard advice is always to go with who knows you better. That said, what was the caliber of the institution of your summer research? If it's not top tier, I think definitely pick #1. Even if it is, it might look um, suspicious to not pick a professor at your school. But, if the other rec is going to be from your school, you should be fine.

If you choose #1, just be sure to really sit down with them and explain your goals and motivations so they can write a truly personalized letter, not just one that echos your transcript or resume.

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zozin
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Re: Who to ask for a LOR?

Postby zozin » Mon Apr 30, 2012 6:50 pm

I'd do #2, since you already have an academic LoR from your UG. Why not both 1 & 2, you can always ask your adviser later in the cycle when he knows you a bit better.

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Tiago Splitter
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Re: Who to ask for a LOR?

Postby Tiago Splitter » Mon Apr 30, 2012 10:56 pm

Mal Reynolds wrote:In this one case, your advisor is right. Do not take that to mean that your advisor will ever be right again-he or she must have gotten lucky..


LOL +1.

Agree with Zozin, get the rec from Prof 2, and if during the course of the year you get to know the first prof well get one from him too. Might come in handy for getting off a waitlist.




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